On Wednesday, during the Hulu ‘19 presentation at The Hulu Theater at Madison Square Garden, executives took the stage to reveal the company’s continued rapid growth, announce original programming and exclusive talent deals that expand Hulu’s content offering, and unveil new brand initiatives, advertising products and user experience enhancements that bolster its goal of becoming the No. 1 choice for TV, in and out of the home.
The company announced it has increased its total customer base to more than 28 million – 26.8 million monthly paid subscribers, and 1.3 million promotional accounts.
“In today’s direct-to-consumer world, viewers are demanding better when it comes to TV – from the user experience to their content choices to the advertising,” said Hulu CEO Randy Freer. “Hulu’s continued growth, as well as the shows and initiatives announced today, reflect our deep investment in product, programming, brand, customer experience and business strategy to ensure that, with Hulu, consumers can connect with the stories they love, at the right time and price, on any device.”
Announcements at this year’s presentation included:
•The Spirits of Vengeance are Coming! In an expanded partnership, Marvel Television will bring two new live-action series to Hulu from a unique corner of the Marvel universe. The iconic adventures into fear properties, “Marvel’s Ghost Rider” and “Marvel’s Helstrom,” are slated to debut on Hulu in 2020.
Marvel’s Ghost Rider, also known as Robbie Reyes, is a quintessential antihero, consumed by hellfire and supernaturally bound to a demon. Reyes lives on the Texas/Mexico border and, when he unleashes the Rider, Robbie brings vengeance for the innocents he encounters, but struggles to control the power he wields.
“Marvel’s Ghost Rider” is executive produced by Ingrid Escajeda, who will serve as showrunner, Paul Zbyszewski and Marvel’s Jeph Loeb.
Daimon and Ana Helstrom are the son and daughter of a mysterious and powerful serial killer in “Marvel’s Helstrom.” The siblings have a complicated dynamic as they track down the terrorizing worst of humanity – each with their attitude and skills.
“Marvel’s Helstrom” is executive produced by Zbyszewski, who will serve as showrunner, and Loeb.
Both series are co-productions with Marvel Television and ABC Signature Studios and join the upcoming season three of “Marvel’s Runaways” and recently announced adult animated series based on the popular Marvel Television characters including “Marvel’s M.O.D.O.K,” “Marvel’s Hit-Monkey,” “Marvel’s Tigra & Dazzler Show” and “Marvel’s Howard The Duck,” which will culminate in a special event, “Marvel’s The Offenders.”
•A Long Time Ago, We Used to be Friends: Hulu announced a first-look teaser for the fourth season of “Veronica Mars.”
The series stars Kristen Bell as Veronica Mars, Jason Dohring as Logan Echolls and Enrico Colantoni as Keith Mars. Guest cast includes J.K. Simmons as Clyde Prickett, Patton Oswalt as Penn Epner, Kirby Howell-Baptiste as Nicole, Ryan Hansen as Dick Casablancas, Clifton Collins Jr. as Alonzo, Max Greenfield as Leo, Percy Daggs III as Wallace, David Starzyk as Big Dick, Francis Capra as Weevil, and Izabela Vidovic as Matty Ross. The show was created and executive produced by Rob Thomas and executive produced by Diane Ruggiero-Wright, Dan Etheridge and Bell.
All eight episodes will be available as of the premiere date, July 26.
In this season, spring-breakers are getting murdered in Neptune, thereby decimating the seaside town’s lifeblood tourist industry. After Mars Investigations is hired by the family of one of the victims to find their son’s killer, Veronica is drawn into an epic eight-episode mystery that pits the enclave’s wealthy elites, who would rather put an end to the month-long bacchanalia, against a working class that relies on the cash influx that comes with being the West Coast’s answer to Daytona Beach.
•Corporate: With Hulu surpassing 28 million total customers, total hours watched on Hulu increased by 75% in 2018. The average time spent per subscriber increased by more than 20% in 2018. Hulu is now the fastest-growing SVOD service in the U.S. (adding more than 7.5 million paid U.S. subscribers in 2018 and continuing to outpace all competition so far this year).